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IAAF seek definitions

World track and field’s governing body will begin the process of agreeing the definition of a woman in an athletics context next week as it prepares to reveal the results of South African runner Caster Semenya’s gender tests.

The IAAF’s medical commission, which begins meeting on Friday, could take a year to deliver that definition, general secretary Pierre Weiss told Associated Press.

“We are obliged to react. It would have been better if we had been prepared to, but we were not prepared,” Weiss said. “We will get a reply in the next 12 months – I don’t expect anything to come out before. There is no definition, but it is the same in other sports – football, swimming, cycling. They don’t have a definition.

“We were in Copenhagen (at the International Olympic Committee meetings) and I asked my colleagues from other sports if they had a definition and nobody has one. But nobody (else) has had the problem so far.”

Weiss expects the IOC medical commission to consider the same issue in November in Lausanne.

Semenya won the 800 metre at the Berlin world championships in August. Before the final, the IAAF announced it had ordered gender tests but those results are not ready yet.

“They are being analyzed worldwide by experts,” Weiss said. “We will promote the outcome of this case as soon as it is known. The plan is to make a deceleration at the latest during our council meeting in November.”


3 comments
Paul van Zijl
Paul van Zijl

The IAAF's medical commission have got it all wrong. Trying to come to a definition of what is a woman is a daunting task way beyond their capabilities. If they want to make sure that no athlete competes as a woman who has some innate biological advantage over other female athletes such as more than usual steroids on board then stipulate the amount of steroids above which no athlete may compete as a woman. This information is easily available and precludes the need to get bogged down in the minefield of what is a woman

concerned
concerned

Doesn't ASA have anything to write on their website. The last article was on the 7th October, before that, the 30th, 29th, etc. Please tell them to FIX THEIR COMMUNICATION. or shall we wait for the new administration who will be replacing them if and when they leave. frustrated........

concerned
concerned

Dear SASCOC Bosses As much as this is extremely important information to share with the South African public, you should administer the content of your website better. As it is, today, the world half marathon took place. Instead of mentioning the performances of our athletes you have articles like these. Once again, we tend to focus on controversial issues and not on the real issues. However, I would like to highlight that we are still thankfull that there is a platform where we can read athletics news, because on the Athletics South Africa (ASA) website, you don't get any news. The results of the world half marathon will only be published by the latest Wednesday or Thursday if we are lucky. On the issue of Semenya, we are all waiting in anticipation and feel sorry for the young lady. regards